Create copy surfaces or virtual planes

Sometimes calculation of daylight indicators directly on model surfaces is not possible. For instance, indicators such as Daylight Factor and Daylight Autonomy are usually calculated for virtual workplanes in the occupied spaces. Sometimes the complexity of the model makes it difficult to calculate on the actual surface.

The Create copy and Create copy in instances features are designed for these situations.

The virtual surfaces created with these tools are only used to position the sensors, they have no influence on the geometry of the model and light distribution.

Some cases when these features can be used:


create_copy_icon Create copy

This feature is used to create single copy of selected surface(s) on predefined distance. Distance can be changed in Sketchup bottom right edit box, once surfaces are created. Default offset distance is 1cm.

offset_distance_edit

For each selected surface single copy surface is created and put in special layer '_dl_X_surfaces', where X is abbreviation of active extension name.
All copy surfaces created when "Create copy" is clicked are put in separate group, outside of any other model groups/components. Even if original surface(s) are part of a group/component, created copies are independent.
If "Create copy" is called for a surface inside an instance of a group/component, it creates only single copy of the surface offseted from the selected surface.

This feature can be called from menu: Extensions-> De Luminae-> [Extension name]-> Create copy


create_copy_instances_iconCreate copy in instances

When Sketchup model contains many instances of the same component/group, surfaces within them should be distinct somehow. Due to the nature of Sketchup instances, it is not possible to attach different attributes and materials to surfaces inside each instance. To enable correct DL-Light calculation and results import into Sketchup, it is necessary to run calculation on 'dummy' surfaces, that would represent the real ones, but be outside of instances.

Tool 'Create copy in instances', creates one copy per instance of selected surface(s) in a separate group. For example if there are 10 instances of the office component in the model, this tool would create offseted 'copy' surfaces for each office instance, resulting in 10 new 'copy surfaces'.
If this tool is called for a surface that is not part of a component/group, it creates single copy, like "Create copy" tool described above.

For each selected surface single copy surface is created and put in special layer '_dl_X_surfaces'.
All copy surfaces created when "Create copy in instances" is clicked are put in separate group, outside of any other model groups/components.

This feature can be called from menu: Extensions-> De Luminae-> [Extension name]-> Create copy in instances


Calculation with 'copy' surfaces

During calculation created surfaces are used for sensor points generation, and are otherwise 'invisible' for calculation (they don't have any geometry, don't cause shadows, or reflect light). Once results are calculated, they are imported onto copy surfaces, and not on original surface.

If user modifies the original surface, it is important to keep results synchronized with model geometry. To achieve that it is suggested to follow this procedure:


Hide 'copy' surfaces

In some cases 'copy' surfaces can make it difficult to work normally in the SketchUp model. Use toggle on/off virtual surfaces feature toggle_virtual_surfaces_icon to show/hide these surfaces if needed.